Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Endangered Species Awareness Post

I think I'll plan to post on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, just because that works. Probably late each night.

Also, if I disappear from the face of the planet for a few days this week, you'll know that I've been brutally murdered by exams. I'm full of terror and anxiety right now, because I have an exam, and a paper I have no idea where to start on, both due on the twenty fifth.
I have no idea what I'm doing.

On to the actual post.

So, you know how some people share pictures on Facebook, or write weepy posts about endangered animals? (Not to be offensive. But I'm not really an animal person. I appreciate the sadness of endangerment, but I'm sorry, I don't get emotionally involved.)
Well, I think I'm going to write an awareness/appreciation post for the beautiful endangered species of Platonic Relationships in Fiction.
I have always loved platonic relationships in stories. They mean so, so much to me. They're the interactions that warm my heart, more often than romance. And it's totally okay if you're different. I just wanted to point out the fact that, whether you like them or not, these relationships are dying. They're all dropping like flower petals in the heat. And I think something should be done about that.

For example:

Sherlock and John [I'm talking BBC] (Critically endangered) ~ In the novel "1984", George Orwell portrays a society where language is being cut down, words being deleted from the English vocabulary, so that certain thoughts are inexpressible. That's what I feel like is happening to me, now. During Sherlock's "The Great Game", I practically jumped around with happiness when Sherlock got scared and slightly protective over John, stuttering around to ask him if he was alright. Also, when the explosive-draped John grabbed Moriarty, willing to sacrifice his life to let Sherlock get away safely, I couldn't help but love it.
I am unable to express my feelings, when I speak about this. I find it amazing and wonderful that two people would care like that for each other. That their friendship could break the ice that Sherlock's soul seems covered in, that it would even, in John's case, melt the instincts of self-preservation, allowing selflessness through.
But, look, any average person on the internet - and here comes the controversy, the touchy subject matter - would think, from that sentence above, that I ship JohnLock. NO! No, no, no, no, no!
Well, why do you have feelings like that, then, the internet asks. Surely, if any two people care about each other past simple friendship, they must be sexually interested in one another.
And that's where you're so wrong. Read Lord of the Rings, for goodness sakes. They say things that are so much more shippy, but, since Tolkien actually understood that people can be gloriously deep friends without ever, ever having a romantic thought, they're not meant to be taken that way.

Other friendships that have made me smile over the years include

Calvin and Hobbes
Phineas and Ferb
Frodo and Sam [Lord of the Rings, obviously]
Hiccup and Toothess [How to Train Your Dragon]
Harry Potter and Hermione Granger
and, my favourite right now: The DoctorDonna [Doctor Who]

A lot of them have fans that ship them romantically. Fortunately, I don't think all of them do. But with almost anything, there comes a point where the present day's mind goes haywire. People can't be devoted friends anymore. They have to be more. And, by being 'more', I believe they become so, so much less.
Think about the word 'love', for a second. Used virtually anywhere outside of family, what do you think of? A couple holding hands or kissing under a cherry tree in the full moon? Something along those lines? Yeah, it's almost impossible to use the word 'love' without someone at least doing a double-take, and wondering if it was meant romantically.

Our universe is built on a platonic relationship. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. For God so loved the world.

I'm scared we're losing sight of that, outside of God and family.

Now, the situation isn't apocalyptic. There are so many friendships still intact. But they can't be strong as steel, anymore, or people start getting the wrong idea. Because that's how we're wired now. And I wish it wasn't that way.


  1. Seconded. I have a slightly more than healthy investment in romantic fictional relationships, and I'll be the first to admit I'm probably not as skilled in writing platonic ones (or at least in sticking to them), but I love them anyway. Arthur, Merlin, and the Knights of the Round is another relationship I hate seeing paired off. Amy and her Raggedy Doctor is another friendship that should say just that.
    I was going to say something else, but I forget.

    1. Sure! Romantic relationships are amazing, too, you won't find me dissing those.
      Oh, from the BBC show especially, do you mean? Or just in general? Yes! Amy x the Doctor - videos or fics - I just can't stand it.

    2. I hadn't actually seen any pairings until the BBC show (apart from the seduction and other things in the legend), and I initially didn't want to start watching Merlin because of the fandom slash. Fortunately I had a friend tell me that's not the intention of the writesr or actors, so what others can read in, I can read right back out.

  2. I have to say, I love this post very much Micah. You hit it spot on (especially with Sherlock and John).

    And yes, Doctor Donna! Remember what he said to Donna when she first came on - "I just want a mate. A friend." He was tired of all these girls falling for him, and Donna most definitely did not fall for him.

    I was getting all ready for a "save the polar bears" post, which I was kind of surprised at, so I love how you applied "endangeredness" to platonic relationships. :)

    1. Thanks so much Lauren!

      Yes! Donna was a breath of fresh air after all the previous companions. Not that I had anything against Martha, and certainly not against Rose, but Donna was so, so fun, and that they were just friends really made it.

      Haha, thanks! I'm kind of glad you didn't expect 'save the polar bears' from me. It's just not my thing. ;)

  3. THANK YOU. THANK YOU. *faceplants on desk* Thank you for this post, ever so much. This is exactly what bothers me about shipping and fandom slash in general. And I'll ditto Lostariel when she says that's one of the reasons she couldn't watch Merlin. I still deal with that problem... but I'm getting over it since I can generally read it right back out, as she says.

    I try to put platonic friendships in my novels. It's something that's disappearing faster and faster in our world, and I hate that.

    1. Haha, no problem! Okay, I didn't know there was a lot of subtextual slash in Merlin before this post - but yeah, reading back out is always good.

      That's great, really good for you. I don't have one in my current work in progress - they are hard to write, without people assuming annoying things. At least for me, because I tend to write fanfiction and those ideas are already in the fandom mind. But you go, girl!

  4. Yeah, I didn't either until I... uh... joined Tumblr. *cough* I think that's where I found out about it, at least.

    Oh, thanks! To be perfectly honest, that was a really broad statement -- with emphasis on the "I try" part. I don't do very well sometimes, just because I get all disturbed by what people might infer from my writing. And sometimes I shy away from writing them completely. But when I think about it, the majority of my relationships in novels are platonic friendships, because it just seems to be something I gravitate toward. It's confusing; I'm kind of back and forth about it because often the idea of my characters being shipped in slash fiction holds me back. However, that is usually outweighed by my desire to, hopefully, present healthy and deep relationships in my writing, no matter what type the relationship is.

    I really, really hope this makes sense. :P I'm rambling a bit here. Oh well.

    1. Oh goodness. I'm planning on joining Tumblr soon, but it is a bit of a black hole, to quote Lostariel. In more ways than one. What do you think? Maybe I should stay off? Idk, I'd mostly follow blogs of Christian friends.

      Nah, that's fine, I understand. Yeah, I hope we can bring back platonic relationships, one good representation at a time.

      I honestly love it when people ramble. Go right ahead.